Monday, September 10, 2012

On Balance (or lack thereof)

Tonight, I'm having flashbacks of my pre-baby teaching days.  Jeff's mom is keeping Sam overnight and Jeff is out of town, so I've been camped at this little Panera booth working away and taking full advantage of their free iced coffee refills (I'll regret this later) for the last three hours.  

Tonight, I feel like a really good teacher.  I'm planning for next week, creating fun (and valuable) lessons, and making color-coded tabs for my binders.  I am in total teacher mode; and, I like this me.  I'd kind-of missed her.

But here's the thing - I like this me tonight. Tonight, these few quiet hours alone with my laptop and  my OCD lesson-planning tendencies are a special treat.  BUT, I don't want this to be my everyday.

Which brings me to balance... or lack thereof.  

I'm finally beginning to accept that - for me - it just doesn't really exist.  For me, it is a constant reminder of what I'm not doing or who I'm not being; instead of just being focused on where I AM and what I AM doing and - more importantly - WHO I'm with.  I'm starting to realize that balance isn't really my end goal after all.

I read a blog post a few months ago (around the time that this article from The Atlantic was so popular) in which the writer said she craved less balance, and more see-saw.   I haven't been able to stop thinking about it.

I like that idea.

See, when you are a balanced, you are just kind-of THERE.  Sure, everything is on the same level and it feels pretty nice for a while; but you aren't ever really steady.  You are working hard to stay there, and wobbling, and constantly worrying about which side will fall first.  And, the worst part?  You aren't enjoying the RIDE.

A see-saw is FUN.  Do you remember them?  Of course, there's the sometimes painful and abrupt moment when your butt hits the ground hard and everything around you jars just a bit; but, there's also the extremely high and wonderful and free feeling when you're on the up side.  

Maybe what I'm after isn't balance, as much as it is just knowing when to make what a priority.  

So tonight?  I'm going to drink too much coffee and stay up late planning and power-pointing, and Googling until my heart's content.  

And, tomorrow?

I'm going to leave my binders at work at 11AM and take my boy to explore a new park... One with a see-saw.  ;)


  1. I miss the old me some days, but most days I'm proud of the new me - I didn't really feel like an adult until I had the responsibility of human life in my hands. I'm not sure if I'm after balance or more hours in the day {or less of a need for sleep}. happy to hear you're taking your evening off to cut loose - lesson planning and over-caffeinating... look at your bad self ;) xo

  2. This is one of your best posts! Great analogy...I'm going to jump on a see-saw myself! :-) Thanks for sharing!

  3. This post was very helpful to me. Thank you.

  4. Bloghopping :)

    I love how you compare having balance in your life to riding a see-saw. And I totally get what you mean. Sometimes you revel in that awesome feeling of totally being high on glee or happiness, but, sometimes, the most wonderful feeling is just being... "steady" and balanced :)

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  8. you seem very happy with your child. i love it

  9. Do you remember them? Of course, there's the sometimes painful and abrupt moment

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